Debut Novella Release!

I am so excited to share that my third standalone book is being released today! This is my debut novella, and I am thrilled to finally unleash its darkness. It is available in paperback and on Kindle here!

The wonderful and talented Gwendolyn Kiste and Christa Carmen blurbed the book — check out what they had to say!

“Sara Tantlinger’s To Be Devoured capitalizes on our macabre preoccupation with the uglier side of nature, with love that topples into obsession, and with madness that is strangely beautiful in its barbarity. Her writing is equivalent to those unremitting avian beings her protagonist is so enamored of: It will hook its talons through your flesh, sink its neck into the ribboned edges of your wounds, and only relinquish your blighted body when it has swallowed your very soul.” –Christa Carmen, author of Something Borrowed, Something Blood-Soaked, winner of the Indie Horror Book Awards for Best Debut Collection

“Vultures, obsession, and an unnatural hunger: What more can you want in a horror story? With To Be Devoured, Sara Tantlinger has done it again as she ratchets up the terror in wonderfully surprising ways while crafting prose that’s always a heady blend of the vicious and the vibrant. A book that’s absolutely not to be missed!” –Gwendolyn Kiste, Bram Stoker Award-winning author of The Rust Maidens

 

To Be Devouredjune2019

 

Monsters, Infection, and Carrion

ICYMI

*The cover for Not All Monsters, designed by the magical Don Noble, is live! I’m in love with it and want the design framed above my bed. It’s gotten fantastic responses so far, which makes me hopeful there will be good interest in this anthology and the future things we may have plans for… 😉 Stay tuned. There’s so much I want to say about the stories in the anthology, but I’m going to save it for later since the book won’t be out until Fall 2020. Good things are worth waiting for, my friends. We’re taking our time to make something really spectacular.

Not All Monsters

 

*There are 5 days left to submit to Eye to the Telescope #33 with the theme INFECTION, which I am guest editing. PLEASE read guidelines carefully. Poems MUST have speculative elements for full consideration. Deadline is June 15th. I look forward to your deadly contagions. I’ve already received hundreds of poems, so it’s going to be intense narrowing these down!

*If you missed it, Gwendolyn Kiste and I were interviewed by Eddie Generous for the Unnerving podcast. We talked about StokerCon and read excerpts from our upcoming books! My novella (paperback and eBook) will be out July 29th, but if eBooks are your thing, you can pre-order those.

Pre-order Gwendolyn’s chapbook here!

To Be Devoured-2*Speaking of my novella, the first early review is here! Thank you so much to Joe and Charlotte at Horrorbound for the review and interview. The review is lovely and made my entire month:

“While the story was fantastically and grotesquely perfect, it is not just the plot that has me gushing over this. The language in this novella is both beautiful and disturbing. Tantlinger shows off her mastery of language with incredibly poetic lines throughout the novella. I was in awe of the contrast between the perfection of the words used and the twisted subject matter they described.”

*Also last week, I stepped into Stephanie Wytovich’s Madhouse for an interview where we chatted true crime, H.H. Holmes, and more. Thanks so much to Stephanie for having me and providing great questions!

*Thanks for catching up with me — I’m working on story edits for Not All Monsters now and reading through the 300+poems I’ve received so far for ETTT, so maybe next month I’ll be caught up and get back into my own WIP project 😉

StokerCon 2019 Recap

Screen Shot 2019-05-14 at 9.04.46 PMWhat a weekend. Where do I even begin? StokerCon 2019 was an amazing adventure. Right off the bat I have to say my favorite thing was the support of this community. Seeing the amazing work that everyone is doing is really exciting. I think it also encourages each one of us to do our best and challenge ourselves, too. I look forward to the HWA’s continued outreach for diversity and inclusiveness. This is an area I am really aiming to be more proactive in, as well.

I don’t think I could capture everything in a recap post, but here are some highlights from my favorite parts of the trip:

*Reuniting with friends and making new ones — I’m going to try and remember names here, but if I leave anyone out it’s because my brain is fried, so I apologize if I miss anyone!

Something I was really excited about this year was that my good friends from graduate school, Kristy and Mike, were able to attend. Hanging out with them and catching up was wonderful. They are two of the best people I know (and are both killer writers). I also got to catch up with many people I haven’t seen in so long: The brilliant EV Knight who has a debut novel coming that I cannot wait to read; Bill and Jeanne Bush, Linda Addison, David Cowen, Marge Simon, Nick Diak, Matt Betts, Brian Keene, Wile E. Young, Chad Stroup, Tim Waggoner, Donna Munro, Hanna Gribble, and more — it was fantastic seeing you all again!

Screen Shot 2019-05-14 at 9.03.33 PM

Myself with Sarah Read and A.E. Siraki!

I also FINALLY got to meet online friends in person, which was so delightful. These people included Gwendolyn Kiste, Gabino Iglesias, Sarah Read, A.E. Siraki, David Busboom, Kathryn McGee, RJ Joseph, Kathleen Kaufman, Leza Cantoral, Christoph Paul, Gaby Triana, Cina Pelayo,  — even though some conversations were brief, it was incredible seeing you all in person. I hope we meet again! (sorry if I missed anyone, like I said, brain = dead)

*The poetry reading with Saba Razvi and Donna Lynch. This was honestly the most fun reading I think I’ve ever done.

 

The atmosphere was so relaxed, the three of us were into each other’s work, and everything was fun and supportive.

Screen Shot 2019-05-14 at 9.03.56 PM

Queens of Horror Poetry 😉

We had a great Q and A session with the audience after our readings, and I think we just really dominated as women in horror who write bloody good poems. Getting to know both of these ladies better and spending time with them was a real joy. Please check out their work!

*Panels: Moderating the historical horror panel was incredibly fun. I received great feedback from the attendees, which didn’t surprise me because the panelists are literal superstars, and their answers to my questions were informative, inspirational, and

Screen Shot 2019-05-14 at 9.04.33 PM

The awesome panelists for Historical Horror

genuine. Thank you again to Lisa Morton, Lisa Kroger, Kevin J. Wetmore, Alma Katsu, and Kathleen Kaufman.
*I was also on the weird poetry panel moderated by the wonderful David Cowen. I had a great time with my fellow panelists answering David’s thoughtful questions and delving deeper into how weird poetry can be defined.
*Also, the panels I attended were really fantastic overall — everyone killed it this year. Thank you so much to the organizers, Brian Matthews, and all the volunteers.

*And of course, the Stoker banquet Saturday night. Saturday was especially exciting to

Screen Shot 2019-05-14 at 9.03.15 PM

Some of my favorite people in the world. I think this is our album cover. Ha.

me because Nick Day and Don Noble, the minds behind StrangeHouse Books, made a crazy one-day trip just to come hang out and be supportive of my nomination. This meant the world to me (and still does). I am still stunned, humbled, and thrilled that The Devil’s Dreamland took home the Stoker Award for Superior Achievement in Poetry Saturday night. Being nominated along with such great talents (Donna Lynch, Marge Simon, Alessandro Manzetti, Bruce Boston, and David Cowen) was a huge honor. I could not believe I was even nominated.

I sat with a wonderful table at the banquet, which included the lovely Gwendolyn Kiste. The fact that we both got to share our wins together was really incredible. The whole experience has been surreal. Again, thank you to everyone who has supported the book and myself in any way. It means the world. You can watch the speeches from the livestream on YouTube — they start around the 3:50:00 mark, and then the first category starts around 4:19:00. As I mentioned in my speech, having my former thesis mentor, Mike Arnzen, be the one to announce that I won was a pretty special moment. Hearing my friends cheer and whoop and clap, having friends and family text me congrats and raise their glasses, was all something I will never forget. It’s giving me goosebumps and making me grin as I write this out. I love you all to death. Thank you for your support and faith when I could not always see it in myself.

Huge congratulations to all the winners and nominees!

 

 

*I always learn so much from these experiences. This year, I think I am finally learning that sometimes you may encounter someone who decides to snub or dismiss you for whatever reason, but that it always says more about their own insecurities and issues than it does your talent and how damned hard you work. I don’t have time for people like that. Instead, I am going to continue to surround myself with supportive friends and company who have often taught me and are continuing to teach me to believe in myself. The biggest thing I really did learn from this con experience is to simply believe in myself and my work, to understand that I do belong in this world and community. To all who have helped show me that through all the support and love, thank you.

It’s doubtful I’ll make it to StokerCon UK 2020, but I will absolutely see you all again in Denver for 2021!

StokerCon 2019 Schedule

Screen Shot 2019-05-07 at 11.49.58 AMTwo more days until Grand Rapids! Despite the hefty grading pile haunting me, I am really looking forward to StokerCon 2019.

There are basically panels every hour that I want to go to, but we will see what’s humanly possible. Otherwise, here’s my StokerCon schedule for the things I’ll 100% be at. Come say hi! I’m ridiculously excited to see everyone…and okay, for the ice cream social, too. I’m still comprehending that I’m nominated for a Stoker, but you know I’m beyond excited to be at the banquet, too!

Thursday:
*Find me wandering around, braindead from the amount of grading I did this week, probably wherever there’s a bar; I may be hysterically excited to see some of my grad friends at this time (fair warning)

Friday:
10:00am, Emerald Room: I’m moderating a SUPERSTAR-filled panel for Historical Horror: Kathleen Kaufman, Lisa Kroger, Lisa Morton, Alma Katsu, Kevin Wetmore, Jr. (like seriously these people are amazing and I can’t wait to interrogate them)

3:00pm, Winchester Room; Reading Block with Donna Lynch, Saba Razvi, and myself (will it rock? YES.)5:00-6:30pm, Crown Foyer BOOKS AND ICE CREAM; I’ll bring copies of things and sign things. Will people buy them? I don’t know but there will be ice cream, so it’s all good.

Saturday:
12:00-1:00pm, Grand View Room B-C; Weird Poetry panel moderated by David Cowen; I’ll be on here with these amazing poets: Mary Turzillo, Randy Rubin, Donna Lynch, Marge Simon, Frank Coffman

nominee

7:00-10:00pm, Bram Stoker Awards and Banquet (yay!)

 

 

Sunday:
*Crying because it’s over; stumbling downstairs in the morning to the hotel’s Starbucks; telling everyone I love them

To Be Devoured

The pre-orders for my debut novella, To Be Devoured, are now live on Amazon here! All other versions will be available when the book is out on July 29th from Unnerving.

To Be Devoured-2

From the back cover:

What does carrion taste like? Andi has to know. The vultures circling outside her home taunt and invite her to come understand the secrets hiding in their banquet of decay. Fascination morphs into an obsessive need to know what the vultures know. Andi turns to Dr. Fawning, but even the therapist cannot help Andi comprehend the secrets she’s buried beneath her anger-induced blackouts.

Her girlfriend, Luna, tries to help Andi battle her inner darkness and infatuation with the vultures. However, the desire to taste dead flesh, to stitch together wings of her own and become one with the flock sends Andi down a twisted, unforgivable path. Once she understands the secrets the vultures conceal, she must decide between abandoning the birds of prey or risk turning her loved ones into nothing more than meals to be devoured.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Open Call: Infection Poetry

Calling all speculative poets! I am so excited to be guest editing an issue of Eye to the Telescope. My theme is INFECTION. Check out the guidelines here and submit your deadly contagions and viruses. Please read the guidelines carefully — The INFECTION issue’s open call ends June 15 before a different editor and a different theme take over for the next round!

Eye to the Telescope 33, Infection, will be edited by Sara Tantlinger.

Screen Shot 2019-04-28 at 6.23.47 PMInfection is defined as an invasion of an organism’s body tissue, or the presence of a virus within a system. These disease-causing agents and their spreading toxins can lurk anywhere, whether at the bottom of a deadly swamp, floating in space, or perhaps already waiting in the body for the right time to conquer their host. Send me your diseases and pathogens, whether it’s an Earthly virus or from the realms and stars beyond. Tell me about the bacteria lurking beneath your skin, the sticky sickness deep in your gut, or how the infection of love drove you to madness.

Any format of speculative poetry is welcome—free verse, formal verse, etc. are all wonderful as long as the ideas are original, evocative, and send an infectious idea into my brain that I can’t stop thinking about. Get creative with those contagious agents using bodies as homes or breeding grounds, and really make me think about what kind of suffering and darkness they can inflict.

See full guidelines here

WiHM, Not All Monsters, and More, Oh My!

Screen Shot 2019-02-27 at 6.22.45 PMThis month I was really lucky to feature nine incredible ladies of horror and their work. I had intended to feature 10 ladies to echo the decade mark for Women in Horror Month’s existence, but unfortunately my last guest had some scheduling conflicts, so rather than scrambling and begging someone to do a last minute interview, I decided to write something up myself!

If you missed the nine interviews, please check them out here because holy smokes, these ladies are up to some incredible, wicked works that you don’t want to miss. A huge thank you to everyone who took time out of their schedules to join me and share more about their work, processes, identity, and more.

In addition to the interviews, I wrapped up some final decisions for the Not All Monsters anthology this month (to be published in 2020 with StrangeHouse Books). The listing is now closed, but if you’re curious about the info/theme, I’ll link it here. The anthology wasScreen Shot 2019-02-27 at 6.39.02 PM an open call for women who write horror, and I am pleased to say I received nearly 300 submissions from all across the globe! That’s a lot of badass ladies writing amazing, vicious, gorgeous, darkly beautiful stories out there.

*Side note — if you submitted to the open call awhile ago and have heard nothing back, keep an eye out. We have decided to send out the acceptances in batches in an effort to keep the book fresh in peoples’ minds since the publication won’t be until 2020. Read more about that on the publisher’s post here.

This anthology was without a doubt the biggest thing I have been an editor for to-date, and I loved it! I hope I have the opportunity to edit more things like it in the future. Here are some things I learned so far, but it’s not over yet:

*Sending out rejections is AWFUL and I hate it…but it’s a necessary part of the job. I also think most people understand that it isn’t personal, it’s all professional and based on what works best for the theme/anthology/goes with the other stories without being too similar, etc…

*Reading that many stories IS overwhelming, and I think I will adapt a better method the next time I do this

*However, seeing the creativity and different way women approached this theme was amazing

*There were a lot of similar themes based around abuse and other trauma in the stories that was heartbreaking because I just knew that so many of those writers had probably experienced something in their own life that may have led to bleeding out some cathartic remedy onto the page. So if you submitted, no matter what happens with your story, I hope you were able to purge some of the bad out and breathe a little easier. You are brave, and amazing, and I love you.

*Women are incredible. But you and I already knew that 🙂 And if anyone ever complains that there aren’t enough women writing horror out there, send them to me. I know about 300 women who are.

February has been a heavy social media month for me, and I think I’m due for a break to work on some of my own projects. Until then, happy writing. Let’s celebrate women in horror all year long!